|fugitive from reality|
Ok, now the plot thickens. Loading by slowly closing the bolt and finishing up with the forward assist doesn't subject the round to the same forces as allowing the rifle to cycle on it's own. You have created the exact opposite of the first round 'flyer' that semi auto pistols are sometimes known for.
'I'm pretty fly for a white guy'.
I'm going to echo SgtGold on this. When I read how chino101 single loaded his ammo, I laughed out loud. Why make things so complicated and inconsistent?
When I shoot my match F-TR AR-15, I always single load. In fact, I don't believe I ever used a real magazine in that rifle, I always have a 5-round equivalent Bobsled in it. I shoot 80gr bullets in that rifle and when I shoot it, I just place a cartridge on the sled, start it in the chamber with my pinky and then press the bolt release lever by pushing on the through-the-fingerguard bolt release to close the bolt. I don't think I have ever used the forward assist on that AR-15 (or any other one that I can remember.)
The bolt always stays open after the round has fired and I have fired that way for years and multiple thousands of rounds. It was to the point where I could shoot an entire string of 22 rounds without even breaking cheekweld. With my right hand I would load the cartridge, release the bolt and pull the trigger. The case came out by itself and the bolt would be open. Repeat. I could fire as quickly as the target would be serviced, if the conditions warranted it. It's a fun rifle to shoot. I made F-Class High Master with that rifle; 1 MOA at 300-600 yards was not a problem, for 20 rounds at a time. It got a lot more difficult at 1000 yards, those 80grainers still move in the wind and those F-Class targets are small.
If I'm reading the OP correctly his groups get more consistent (smaller) when he follows his "single loading procedure". I'll admit it raised my eyebrow when he mentioned easing the bolt forward and then using the forward assist. Your (Nikon's) method of using the bolt release is what I visualized when I first read the post.
|Hop head |
1/2 moves forward?
In retrospect I should have said "awkward" instead of "complicated and inconsistent." The point I was trying to make is there's no need to try to be so cautious. But after reviewing what chino101 wrote, I haven't got a clue what "then lower the bolt on the round and finally locking the bolt in place suing the forward assist" means. How does one "lower the bolt on the round?"
At first I thought he was catching the bolt with his fingers while releasing and then slowly pushing it in, now I don't know.
I will also add that a lot of time I would not even start the cartridge in the chamber; I would just put it on the Bobsled and push the bolt release in the fingerguard and then shoot. I would not see any difference on target that could be due to not starting the cartridge in the chamber before releasing the bolt.
This rifle is the most precise AR that I own, ahead of my NM AR-15. I'm sure a lot has to do with the Krieger barrel it wears along with the ammo that I assemble for it. I simply cannot test it feeding from magazines.
MY NM AR-15 doesn't exhibit any preference to single load vs mag load, except perhaps something to do with the last round in a mag. I sometimes thought it was because the bolt cycled differently since there was no cartridge in the mag to slow it down, but nothing that I could confirm.
I think the OP is pulling back on the charging handle to release the bolt lock and then riding the charging handle while the bolt goes forward and then uses the forward assist to make sure the bolt closes and locks and the round finish seating.
He's basically shooting an AR like a bolt action.
I wonder if the rifle exhibits the same issue with shorter rounds or different magazines.
I'm sure you are correct. It's just a nasty thing to keep doing from prone. I am way too lazy to do that and that's why I installed a through the fingerguard bolt release. I only have that device on that one rifle. I do not want it on any other AR.
When I shot Service Rifle, with coat and sling, I used the regular pinch over the handle to release the bolt and then shoulder the rifle. I watch the SR guys at our matches and they do it that way still. Never with the T-handle.
When you have a scope on the rifle, that bolt release gets further away.
In this case I start with the bolt locked back, and with no magazine. I place a round into the chamber, pull back on the charging handle and ease the bolt forward until the bolt face rests on the round, and then press the forward assist until it goes into battery. Overly complicated, and unnecessary, yep. Just didn't want the bolt to slam into the round.
Thanks to everyone for the insight, I learned a lot more than I anticipated from this thread.
Wow, you really go out of your way to complicate your life. When I first started shooting Service Rifle and single-loading at the longer distances, I got a follower for one of my magazines. Later on, I got a Bobsled.
I went to originalbobsled.com to see what he's offering these days. He's got a bunch of stuff and has a chart that shows who carries his products. I have 2 sleds for AR-15, one for my AR-10 and I also have his AR-15 Bolt Release Extension on my F-TR match AR-15.
I haven't tried single feeding in such a manner, as I've always let the bolt slam forward. So I can't state if your easy in method would have an effect on accuracy.
I have cycled bolt action rifles slow-and-easy versus fast-and-hard. I don't see an accuracy difference here, therefore I have no issues slamming the bolt home in precision rifle matches when there is great time pressure for a course of fire.
Assuming your easy in method actually does improve accuracy, I find it difficult to believe the improvement would be as significant as a 1.5 MOA to 1.0 MOA change. I doubt most of us have the skills to statistically notice an accuracy difference from loading methods. Of course there is a possibility that your gun has a serious issue with damaging bullets in the auto loading process. You could test this pretty easily both comparing both methods of loading on both this LWRC and another AR. Don't fire the rounds -- load, then manually eject the live rounds.
I have a DI rifle which experienced 5 jams a couple months ago -- double feeds caused by a bad 20-round Gen 2 Magpul magazine. My rifle would jam when the tips of two rounds tried to enter the chamber at the same time. In all 5 instances, the bullets were noticeably scored. Two of the five jams occurred during practice -- I reloaded the jammed rounds and shot them from a barrier-supported position at 250-300 yards. I saw no difference in bullet accuracy. The ammo was factory Hornady 40 grain Vmax.
The other three jams occurred in competition, at the Team Safari match in New Mexico. I reloaded the rounds from the first two jams and saw no difference in accuracy on targets that were likely in the 300 to 500 yard ballpark. For the third jam I left the rounds on the ground, as we were tight on time at that stage. The ammo was factory Hornady 73 ELD-M.
I have multiple AR-15s with which I just let the gun cycle rounds. I generally shoot suppressed, which means the guns are over gassed -- they cycle quickly and with authority. This does not seem to affect their accuracy. All of my ARs are capable of sub-MOA accuracy with the right factory ammo, and I don't just mean at 100 yards. Sub MOA performance at 400-700 yards occurs regularly. The AR I used in the match discussed above has a knack for 1/2 to 1/3 MOA performance.
Assuming your inspection of the rounds doesn't show significantly damaged bullets (see my third paragraph above), then I suggest having another person shoot your rifle via the two methods. Then try different ammo.
I still suspect it's what you are doing as the shooter while driving the rifle, rather than the loading method.
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